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Glasgow 2014 Cultural Programme unveiled as nationwide celebration

Published: 16 Jul 2013

The Organising Committee of the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games today (Tuesday 16 July) launched its official Cultural Programme and unveiled the new brand that will promote the year-long countdown of events.

Designed by internationally-acclaimed Scottish artist Jim Lambie the brand draws inspiration from the famous star-clad façade of Glasgow’s legendary east end venue, the Barrowland Ballroom and utilises Lambie’s characteristic approach to line, colour and popular culture.

Quotes | Detailed Programme Highlights | Notes to Editors

About the Programme

The Glasgow 2014 Cultural Programme will be a key part of the Games experience for spectators and visitors. Running from the ‘One Year to Go’ milestone in July 2013 until the end of August 2014, it will showcase the best of Scottish culture alongside creative work from across the Commonwealth and be a nationwide celebration of the Games, reaching its peak as Glasgow bursts into life at Games time.

The programme will feature theatre, dance, music, visual arts, comedy and multi-media; intimate shows and outdoor spectaculars; work in theatres, community centres, on bicycles, by rivers, in botanic gardens, art galleries, cinemas, public spaces and much more.

There are two strands to the Glasgow 2014 Cultural Programme – itself a collaboration between the Organising Committee, Creative Scotland and Glasgow Life. These are:

  • Culture 2014 will kick off this year and is the Scotland-wide cultural countdown to the Games, extending beyond the Closing Ceremony. Many events will happen from mid-June to tie-in with the Queen’s Baton Relay – the global precursor to the Games – as Scotland’s towns and communities celebrate as the baton passes through.
  • Festival 2014 is the massive Games-time celebration in Glasgow running alongside the sporting action, transforming the city from 19 July to 3 August with an invigorating mix of entertainment, culture and enjoyment filling the streets, spaces and stages of Glasgow. 

Highlights of the Glasgow 2014 Cultural Programme include:

  • Big Big Sing - Produced by Glasgow Unesco City of Music, a range of inspiring singing events taking place across Scotland from October 2013 including 'Big Sings’, an online Commonwealth choir, and staged singing events in Glasgow during Games Time.
  • Perch - An ambitious and spectacular global performance on multiple stages high above streets in three countries - Scotland, Australia, and Brazil - Perch will utilise aerial theatre, street theatre, community participation, choirs, orchestras and media broadcast in an international collaboration by Conflux, Legs On The Wall and Lume Teatro.
  • News Just In by Random Accomplice will be a continually evolving, satirical comedy set in a fictional media office of Glasgow 2014. Described as ‘part 2012’, part ‘Drop The Dead Donkey’, it will mix live theatre, a live 'studio' audience, filmed news reports and on-line content to explore the everyday office stress of organising an international event of the size and scale of the Games. 
  • Blueblock Studio - An interactive pop-up space for children aged 4 and under and their parents and carers to participate in energetic and immersive storytelling performances linked to Commonwealth values of friendship and understanding. Led by artist Katy Wilson and produced by Starcatchers, Blueblock Studio will visit communities right across Scotland.
  • Julia Donaldson Cycling Marathon – acclaimed actor and theatre maker Tam Dean Burn will undertake a marathon endeavour to travel by bicycle to locations across Scotland and read to children, over the course of his journey, all of former Childrens’ Laureate Julia Donaldson's 167 books. Best known for the phenomenally successful children's book The Gruffalo, Julia Donaldson's catalogue of works includes picture books, phonic books, music books, plays, and early age books.

Organisers are also delighted to confirm that the previously announced exhibition celebrating 25 years of contemporary art in Scotland, Generation, and the first ever New Music Biennial, including performances of 20 new commissions in Glasgow on 2 – 3 August as part of Festival 2014, will become part of the official Cultural Programme along with the hugely successful country-wide initiative Get Scotland Dancing.

Another major commission as part of Cultural programme will see a disused site nearby to the Emirates Arena and Sir Chris Hoy Velodrome in the east end of Glasgow transformed by a public artwork.  For Making the Most of Dalmarnock, which is promoted by VELOCITY, Create London, architects Assemble and Scottish artist Ruth Ewan will work with local communities in Dalmarnock to design and construct a permanent outdoor learning and play area. 

Scottish Opera, Louise Welsh, Tam Dean Burn, Claire Cunningham, Aidan Moffat, Paul Fegan, Janice Parker, Cora Bissett, Kieran Hurley, Phil Collins, Janey Godley, the Scottish Poetry Library, the Citizens Theatre, and Barrowland Ballet are also among the artists and organisations who will take part in a programme that will be a massive part of the Games experience for spectators, residents and visitors.

More details of all activity taking place as part of the Cultural Programme announced with key highlights today will be provided in the coming months. There will also be announcements of significant additional projects, currently being developed, which will form part of the Cultural Programme.


Eileen Gallagher, Independent Director on the Glasgow 2014 Board and Chair of the Ceremonies, Culture and Queen’s Baton Relay Committee, said:

“With just over a year to go, Glasgow and Scotland are on a global stage – and our best artists and performers are about to showcase the very finest of Scottish and Commonwealth culture to the world.

“As we count down the days to Glasgow 2014, the entire nation can celebrate and be part of the Games, with an ambitious programme of performance and entertainment which will touch every corner of Scotland. Then as all eyes turn to Glasgow, the city will burst into life with a massive celebration which will provide an entertaining and memorable Games time experience, for citizens, spectators and visitors alike.”

Scottish artist Jim Lambie said:

“I was delighted to be asked to design the cultural symbol for the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games. One of the most significant cultural contributions to Glasgow has been Glasgow Barrowlands. This became an important reference within the design process. Its iconic ‘shooting star’ emblem has been placed central within the cultural programme’s identity, while maintaining continuity with the overall image of the Games.”

Dr Bridget McConnell, Director of Ceremonies, Culture and Queen’s Baton Relay at Glasgow 2014 and Chief Executive of Glasgow Life, said:

“This is a chance for Scotland and Glasgow to shine and to celebrate and enjoy the very finest of our incredible creative talent. We want everyone to get involved, whether enjoying a performance or taking part, everyone can be part of the Games and feel proud of our great cultural heritage.”

Janet Archer, Chief Executive of Creative Scotland, said:

“Culture 2014 and Festival 2014 are going to be incredible. World leading artists and local communities will work together in a wide range of different places. Work will be cutting edge, insightful, fun, spectacular and intimate. It will challenge and delight.

“Culture 2014 will build up to the Games, making connections across Scotland, the UK and the Commonwealth, with many amazing opportunities for people from across Scotland to get involved. Festival 2014 will place arts and culture at the very heart of Glasgow at Games Time with a dynamic and vibrant celebration that marks the coming together of many nations and people. Culture 2014 will then pick up again, taking us on a cultural journey that marks the end of an incredible summer of sport and culture.

“Today is just the beginning of a programme that is an integral part of the Commonwealth Games, a truly national celebration that shines a light on our artists, our culture, our creativity, our communities and our places.”

Minister for External Affairs, Humza Yousaf said:

“In 2014, the eyes of the world will be on Scotland and Glasgow and we will have the opportunity to build on our international reputation for cultural innovation and excellence. It is testament to Scotland’s talent and ability that such an exciting variety of projects will be on offer for people right across Scotland and the Commonwealth, as part of the Glasgow 2014 Cultural Programme. All of us will have the opportunity to get involved to experience, celebrate and showcase all that is great about our nation’s culture and our creativity.”

Councillor Archie Graham, the Deputy Leader of Glasgow City Council and Executive Member for the Commonwealth Games, said:

“Glasgow is Scotland’s cultural powerhouse and we want to show the world that we know how to put on a party. During Games time, the city will be transformed, with outstanding performances and events which everyone can enjoy – and I have no doubt that every Glaswegian will play their part in the Games, not only by enjoying the very best in sport and culture, but by offering an invitation for everyone to come and enjoy our legendary hospitality.”

Jon Doig, Chief Executive of Commonwealth Games Scotland, said:

“The Glasgow 2014 Cultural Programme will certainly complement the drama and excitement of live sport that will take over the city and its venues at Games Time. We very much welcome today’s announcement which I am sure will create an electric atmosphere in Glasgow and around Scotland in the build-up to the athletes taking centre stage next year and right throughout the competition.”

Detailed Programme Highlights

The Spokesmen is an outdoor theatre production by Visible Fictions with the cast and audience travelling through the story on bikes. Performed in parks across Scotland, this hilariously heart-warming tale asks communities to see the place they live with a renewed curiosity and to experience live theatre in an outdoor setting on the move!  (Part of Culture 2014 and Festival 2014).

Celebrating the nations comedy storytelling abilities, Janey Godley will tour to far-flung corners of Scotland, delivering her own show and gathering stories and images as she goes, in Journeys to Glasgow. These will be celebrated during Festival 2014 with comedy bus tours utilising a vintage Bedford classic bus, stand up shows featuring Scottish and Commonwealth artists, a dedicated you tube channel and a soundslides film of the journey. Janey Godley is a multi-award-winning Scottish comedienne, playwright, award winning blogger, best-selling author and former Scotsman newspaper columnist. She will be joined by her daughter, the actress and stand-up Ashley Storrie throughout the project. (Part of Culture 2014 and Festival 2014)

A new performance work, entitled Guide Gods, devised by Claire Cunningham exploring the perspectives of the major religions and faiths towards disability will be presented in community settings in Glasgow in June 2014. Claire, a multi-disciplinary performer and choreographer, will perform the piece with live musical accompaniment and work closely with other artists, faith leaders, and communities in Glasgow and internationally to develop the finished piece. Claire Cunningham’s unique performance style integrating the dynamic and imaginative use of her crutches, alongside her beautiful voice (she trained as a classical singer), aerial and acting skills have made her a much-sought after performer both in the UK and internationally. Her body of works, including Ménage à Trois which was part of Unlimited, have been critically acclaimed for their humorous and intelligent challenges to issues of aesthetics and dance. (Part of Culture 2014)

The Empire Café will be based in Glasgow’s Merchant City for seven days during the Commonwealth Games and will explore Scotland’s involvement with the North Atlantic Slave trade via tea, coffee, sugar and cotton. At first glance the café will look like a traditional tea room, but closer inspection will reveal furnishings patterned with symbols of the slave trade. The Empire Café will host a series of debates, academic papers, literary readings, films, workshops and art installations themed around Scotland and slavery. It will also commission poems from Commonwealth and Scottish poets on the same theme, which will be published in an anthology in co-operation with the Scottish Poetry Library and Scottish PEN. The free poetry anthology will be distributed via The Empire Café and selected libraries. The work is led by author Louise Welsh and Jude Barber of Collective Architecture (Part of Festival 2014).

Critically acclaimed songwriter and raconteur Aidan Moffat will partner with multi-award winning filmmaker Paul Fegan in Where You're Meant to Be to document a Scottish road trip celebrating the art of storytelling and its indelible place in Scotland's psyche. The road trip begins in April 2014 and will include performances across Scotland by Aidan and his band of new songs and stories. Local artists will also perform at each show. These dates will be preceded by the film makers visiting the tour’s planned destinations and engaging with local arts communities, writers and musicians, exploring the history of the cities, towns and villages, and their regional storytelling culture. The final film will be premiered in Glasgow around the close of the Commonwealth Games in August 2014. (Part of Culture 2014 and Festival 2014)

GRIT is an ambitious new multi-form, site-specific, international collaborative theatre production based on the inspiring life and music of one of Scotland's most innovative, pioneering and influential musicians, Martyn Bennett. Multi-award winning Director, Cora Bissett (Olivier Award winning RoadKill/ Whatever Gets You Through the Night and hit new political musical Glasgow Girls) and one of Scotland's most provocative and urgent playwrighting voices Kieran Hurley will work with a team of International and Scottish Dance, circus and theatre artists including Canada's renowned choreographer Dana Gringas ( Animals of Distinction) and the world renowned technical Director of Cirque Du Soleil, Andrew Watson to  create a truly cross-form total theatre experience. GRIT is produced by Pachamama Productions in an association with Tramway and Mull Theatre, now part of Comar. It will be staged firstly in Tramway One then in a unique Midsummer weekend in Mull. (Part of Culture 2014).

The McLaren 2014 Programme will promote and celebrate the life and work of the pioneering, Scottish-born animator and filmmaker, Norman McLaren. McLaren 2014 will begin in Stirling on the centenary of McLaren’s birth, 11 April 2014, followed by special exhibitions and screenings in Stirling, Glasgow and Edinburgh, 25th anniversary celebrations of the McLaren Award at the 2014 Edinburgh International Film Festival, and a nationwide public engagement programme, seeking to get Scotland animating.  McLaren 2014 will conclude at the end of the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games on the 3 August.  The McLaren 2014 Programme is being produced by the Centre for the Moving Image, working with partners from across Scotland, the UK and Canada.  The Programme is being produced in collaboration with the National Film Board of Canada. (Part of Culture 2014 and Festival 2014)

Artist, composer & performer Hanna Tuulikki's Air falbh leis na h-eòin (Away with the Birds) is an ambitious site-specific project on the Isle of Canna, exploring the vocal mimesis of birds in Gaelic song. At its heart is an outdoor staging of Tuulikki’s score, fragmenting and re-weaving extracts of Gaelic songs into a soundscape that grows out of the landscape. Performed by a female ensemble, it also features field recordings by Geoff Sample and film footage by Daniel Warren. Air falbh leis na h-eòin is a re-imagining of the archives and vibrant lives of John Lorne Campbell and Margaret Fay Shaw, two of Scotland's most important ethnomusicologists and the last Laird and Lady of the island. Between them they helped to rescue vast quantities of oral tradition from oblivion. Produced by Suzy Glass in association with Cape Farewell (Part of Culture 2014). 

Award winning independent choreographer and dance-maker Janice Parker will work with a diverse cast from Glasgow's Commonwealth who invite you to a new performance work, Glory, which will celebrate performers, bodies, the pursuit of excellence and alternative forms of the elite in movement. Opening on Commonwealth Day in March 2014, this multi-media performance will create parallels between the dancers’ and the athletes’ rigour, discipline and aesthetic, drawing on conventions and rituals of performance and of the Games themselves. Performers will be from a wide range of Glasgow's Commonwealth Community and be of different ages, abilities, levels of experience and body-types. The work will be staged in in a "Performers’ Village" designed by visual artist Richard Layzell, sited in Tramway, and inspired by the concept of the Commonwealth 2014 Athletes Village. Tramway will co-produce the project. (Part of Culture 2014)

Building on the success of Poetry 2012 the Scottish Poetry Library in collaboration with BBC Scotland will present poetry from around the Commonwealth in Commonwealth Poets United. Six Scottish poets and poets with links to Scotland from Canada, India, Jamaica, New Zealand, Nigeria and South Africa will give public readings in locations across Scotland and take part in school visits from March 2013.  They will record their experiences for BBC broadcast and record poems for SPL podcasts and website. The 12 poets will also be commissioned to create new work for the BBC’s Sonnets from Sunrise to Sunset project. (Part of Culture 2014 and Festival 2014).

In the Julia Donaldson Cycling Marathon acclaimed actor and theatre maker Tam Dean Burn will undertake a marathon endeavour to travel by bicycle to locations across Scotland and over the course of his journey read to children all of Glasgow-based former Children’s Laureate Julia Donaldson's 167 books. Best known for the phenomenally successful children's book The Gruffalo, Julia Donaldson's catalogue of works includes picture books, phonic books, music books, plays, and early age books. Tam's readings will happen through exclusively free performances in a wide range of venues and be a unique blend of Julia's more and less well known stories and songs, with musical accompaniment by Andy Alston and shared readings of her plays written especially for children to perform, to help develop reading and imagination skills. Produced by Trigger, the Glasgow based cross- art form specialists. (Part of Culture 2014 and Festival 2014).

Big Big Sing is a nationwide celebration of singing produced by Glasgow UNESCO City of Music. It will inspire thousands of people to sign up and get singing in the lead up to and during Games Time. Kicking off this Autumn, Big Big Sing will provide a wide range of opportunities to participate in the Cultural Programme. With the Big Seven Community Choirs across Scotland, a range of live Song Stages in and around Glasgow, and a free Song Book of newly commissioned songs available anywhere, there will be every reason to join in and get singing. There’ll also be a massed singing event in Glasgow, and an online choir combining singers and songs from around the Commonwealth. No experience is required to take part. A new national framework of information and training will underpin Big Big Sing.  (Part of Culture 2014 and Festival 2014). 

Boomerang from Glasgow-based Active Events, will celebrate the Indigenous Commonwealth through a unique collaboration of Gaelic, Aboriginal and Mâori traditions in language, song, music and dance. Performances will be presented at Womad New Zealand in March 2014, Sydney Opera House Message Sticks Festival in April 2014 and then in the Isle of Lewis as part of the Heb Celt Festival before culminating in a performance as part of Festival 2014. Breabach, who recently curated the highly acclaimed Burns Night collaboration for Celtic Connections, will curate the Scottish component of the show. Rhoda Roberts Aboriginal Artistic Director for Sydney Opera House, Message Sticks and Boomerang festivals will curate the Aboriginal artists. Emere Wano and Drew James of the Taranaki Arts Festival Trust, producers of both WOMAD New Zealand and the Tarnaki International Arts Festival will lead on the involvement of the Maori artists. (Part of Culture 2014 and Festival 2014)

The hugely successful country-wide initiative, Get Scotland Dancing, which encourages more people to get active and participate in dance, presents a wide-ranging programme for the Glasgow 2014 Cultural Programme from March 2014 including dance trails, dance along-movies, YDance's Commonwealth Youth Dance Festival, and a Commonwealth Ceilidh. The programme will be presented with the national Dance Hubs and other partner organisations across Scotland. (Part of Culture 2014 and Festival 2014)

Building on the Authors Live programme Scottish Book Trust in collaboration with BBC Scotland Learning, will present a programme of events from the host city featuring an exciting range of leading Scottish, UK and Commonwealth-based authors and illustrators for children and broadcast them live for free over the internet to schools across the Commonwealth. There will also be an educational programme working directly with teachers from local authorities across Scotland and from Commonwealth countries.  (Part of Culture 2014 and Festival 2014)

New Music Biennial 2014 will support 20 brand new commissions by some of the UK's most exciting composers, including 6 Scottish-based composers, to be performed across the country and at two special weekend events at London's Southbank Centre (4-6 July 2014) and Glasgow UNESCO City of Music to coincide with the Commonwealth Games (2-3 August 2014). New Music Biennial is a PRS for Music Foundation initiative, in partnership with Arts Council England, Creative Scotland and the British Council. It is presented in collaboration with BBC Radio 3, NMC Recordings, Southbank Centre and Glasgow UNESCO City of Music. (Part of Culture 2014 and Festival 2014)

A major commission for the East End of Glasgow, promoted by VELOCITY which is part of the Cultural programme, will see a disused site nearby to the Emirates Arena and Sir Chris Hoy Velodrome transformed by a public artwork - Making the Most of Dalmarnock.  With a focus on alternative educational practice and its relationship to the public realm, Create London, architects Assemble and Scottish artist Ruth Ewan will work with local communities in Dalmarnock to design and construct a permanent outdoor learning and play area.  The project aims to connect local people – particularly the children of settled and show eople communities - to one another through the design process and creation of a new shared space. Funded by Glasgow City Council, Creative Scotland and Clyde Gateway Urban Regeneration Company. VELOCITY is a cultural response to the impact of the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games promoting an aspirational approach to partnership working to re-maginerepair and reconnect neighbourhoods, communities and the city.

Scottish Dance Theatre's Scale Dance is a series of dance provocations – epic and miniature - to Scotland’s infants, parents and audiences that capture the most important human endeavour – the journey to individual mastery of the body. The project will include Scale Dance bespoke residencies for toddlers/parents, a touring film studio capturing children's movement, a dance for professionals choreographed by Scotland’s toddlers in a purpose-built park in Dundee City Square, and a mass dance for parents and children. (Part of Culture 2014) 

Blueblock Studio is an interactive pop up space for children aged 4 and under and their parents and carers to take part in and enjoy creative play and storytelling. Led by artist Katy Wilson and produced by Starcatchers, a pioneering organisation which specialises in performances and creativity for babies, toddlers and young children, Blueblock Studio will visit communities across Scotland from May 2014. In the morning creative play sessions will encourage parents and babies to explore, move and interact with large, colourful geometric shapes, animations, instruments, lighting and sounds in the space. In the afternoons, a storytelling performance for 2-4 years olds based on Who's Calling written by Kenyan author Charity Waciuma will take place. (Part of Culture 2014 and Festival 2014)

Sports Stories from around the African Commonwealth will explore African sports and culture through film and will strive to open new audiences up to the Games, to Africa and to sport. Presented by Africa in Motion (AiM) it will take viewers on a journey through the African Commonwealth highlighting triumphs and key challenges and opportunities through sport. The programme will include over 15 films from across the African Commonwealth, panel discussions with expert speakers and educational workshops. Screenings will take place in a wide range of venues including cinemas, schools and universities around Scotland. Africa in Motion (AiM), an annual film festival, taking place in Edinburgh and Glasgow, is now in its eighth year. (Part of Culture 2014 and Festival 2014)

Oursels As Ithers See Us is a documentary film and live music performance, with a contemporary music score curated by one of Scotland’s leading ‘indie’ musicians. Taking its title from Rabbie Burns, the project, which is produced by Faction North Ltd, will be a moving, emotional musical and visual poem from Scotland to the world.  The film will be constructed from archive material from the Scottish Screen Archive, featuring people and places along the QBR route. The completed film, together with its score will be shown from June 2014, together with live musical performances of the soundtrack by local musicians alongside world famous musicians, all building up to a live musical performance as part of Festival 2014. Being carried out in association with BBC Scotland. (Part of Culture 2014 and Festival 2014)

A major new film by renowned international artist Phil Collins will be presented at a unique outdoor screening event accompanied by a specially commissioned live musical score on the site of the former bandstand in Queen’s Park on the Southside of Glasgow during Festival 2014. Fusing fantasy and reality, he will draw on a range of stories, characters and images collected by him from Glasgow, to create a unique, surprising and highly original new vision of the city at its most international, through the eyes of an artist who has been both resident and visitor. Commissioned by The Common Guild. (Part of Festival 2014)

The Clyde and the Thames will be the settings for a spectacular dance production, The River. Inspired by historical and personal stories of journeys between Commonwealth countries, The River is being created and performed by Barrowland Ballet's professional ensemble alongside a large community cast under the artistic direction of Natasha Gilmore and in partnership with East London Dance. The project will culminate in two high profile dance performances accompanied by a live choir along the rivers' banks and on boats, in London, and in Glasgow for Festival 2014. (Part of Festival 2014)

The East End Social aims to be the most ambitious, eclectic and community-orientated music programme the east end of Glasgow has ever seen. Curated by Bridgeton-based label Chemikal Underground - working closely with the urban regeneration company Clyde Gateway - music events, live performances and community initiatives will be woven into the fabric of the area Chemikal Underground has called home for more than sixteen years. Utilising an extraordinary range of new, unconventional and everyday venues, The East End Social will incorporate parks, train stations, sports centres, town halls, pubs, bandstands, schools and more besides to deliver an exciting and diverse programme of music within Glasgow’s east end. With flagship events featuring international artists, augmented by a constellation of smaller and medium sized initiatives and performances throughout the community, The East End Social promises to be an internationally facing but locally focused celebration of Glasgow’s love affair with music. (Part of Culture 2014 and Festival 2014)

In (i)Land, faced with life on a deserted island, three characters uncover a means of escape back to civilisation only to discover that the float will only carry one. This new integrated dance performance explores isolation, humanity, ingenuity and invention and a big pile of sand! Choreographed by Marc Brew, the work will be performed in a range of settings from sea sides to town centres from June 2014. (Part of Culture 2014 and Festival 2014)

Squash merges with dance in Squish Squared, a performance and education project which will be presented by Room 2 Manoeuvre (R2M) in squash courts across Scotland from June. This dynamic and humorous duet, which is being created to be of particular interest to young audiences, is based on the theme of day to day competition, present throughout life, and played out in a Squash court. It is being developed by R2M Artistic Director  Tony Mills and dancer Tom Pritchard with rehearsals based at the Brunton Theatre, Musselburgh, where R2M is a resident company. Following each performance there will be dance and squash tuition for the audience. (Part of Culture 2014 and Festival 2014)

As part of the Big Big Sing, Hands Up for Trad will coordinate a national song relay, linking communities across Scotland and creating an extensive network of community choir performances at locations along the route of the Queen’s Baton Relay. A special song that anticipates and captures the excitement and mood ahead of Glasgow 2014 will be commissioned and each choir will create their own unique arrangement of the song and then perform it in their own locality to celebrate the arrival of the Queen’s Baton Relay.  Choirs will also develop and present their own repertoire. (Part of Culture 2014 and Festival 2014)

Stories from Glasgow's east end will be celebrated with puppetry, music and storytelling all performed in an ice cream van for The Pokey Hat. The stories will be gathered during community Gala days and workshops in Glasgow before the tour, which begins in June. Clare McGarry, Artistic Director of Grinagog Theatre, composer Oliver Searle and writer Martin O’Connor will work with a range of other artists and organisations on the piece and audiences will be treated to an ice cream at each performance! (Part of Culture 2014 and Festival 2014) 

Corroborree is a six week arts festival beginning in June that will animate five of Scotland’s botanic gardens by celebrating people, indigenous culture and ecological diversity among the Commonwealth of Nations. A group of established artists from Commonwealth countries specialising in different artforms will work alongside Scottish artists to create a range of work during residencies at the gardens. There will also be lots of ways for the public to participate, with public events, demonstrations and workshops. Corroboree aims to be a green festival. Music will be unplugged, food will be local and healthy, transport will be sustainable and the plants and natural features of the gardens will be a prominent part of the celebrations. (Part of Culture 2014 and Festival 2014)

Metagama is a ground breaking collaboration between Justin Young and Iain F Macleod about the Scottish emigrant experience in Canada and tells the profoundly moving story of a father and son, and the recovery of language and identity. Produced by Dundee Rep Theatre, with Justin Young as the primary playwright, and Iain F MacLeod as co-writer and author of the play’s Gaelic text, Metagama will have its world premiere in Glasgow at The Tron and then transfer for a run at Dundee Rep before touring in the Highlands. (Part of Culture 2014 and Festival 2014)

The Commonwealth Youth Circus will be a new company creating high octane, spectacular performances showcasing contemporary circus, including the specialist artforms of stilt-acrobalance and acrobatic parkour. The company will feature specially recruited young performers between 15 and 24 years old, from Scotland and Commonwealth countries. Training for 9 months, they will join the Queen’s Baton Relay for a number of pop-up performances at locations across Scotland. The Commonwealth Youth Circus is a collaboration between Bright Night International, Glasgow Parkour and Aerial Edge in partnership with youth circus charity Pocket Circus and the Edinburgh Mela. The search for the circus performers of tomorrow is now on – brightnightinternational.com will feature the audition call and short documentaries of the progress of the young company. (Part of Culture 2014 and Festival 2014)

Scottish PEN will hold a unique series of literary events across Scotland in parallel with the Queen's Baton Relay which will explore how Scottish writers and communities have welcomed literary visitors and writers in need of help, a shared a sense of Scottishness through words and writing and how, in turn, Scottish cultural identity has been influenced by this history. Through the PEN International Network, the projects aims to bring the finest international writers to these events, reinforcing and re-establishing literary connections Scotland has created with the wider world. An extensive range of education and community projects will also take place. (Part of Culture 2014)

A landmark exhibition celebrating some of the very best art to have emerged from Scotland in the last 25 years is announced today GENERATION will see new and existing work shown at more than 50 venues across the country from June to October 2014. This nationwide programme will be one of the most ambitious celebrations of contemporary art ever held by a single country. GENERATION has been developed as a partnership between the National Galleries of Scotland and Glasgow Life, supported by Creative Scotland.  (Part of Culture 2014 and Festival 2014)

At the old gateway to Glasgow, now the gateway to the Games, stories flow from the mouth of the Clyde... White Gold is an astonishing site specific, promenade performance set in The Sugar Sheds in Greenock. Brought to the sugar sheds for storing, sifting, refining and finally presenting, White Gold is woven together from vivid and touching narratives gathered from across the nation. The show will use drama, movement, original music and breathtaking aerial performance to unfold a narrative around the audience as they promenade through the show. Surprising, poignant and deeply moving, White Gold gives the community of Greenock and Glasgow top billing as the nation stars. White Gold is an original creation by Mark Murphy and is produced by Iron-Oxide (Part of Culture 2014)

Scottish Opera is leading a coalition of partner organisations from Commonwealth countries in the creation of a new piece of music theatre on the universal theme of friendship. Internationally acclaimed novelist Alexander McCall Smith will write the libretto, with music by composer Pippa Murphy. This four year project will culminate in four weeks of rehearsal and performance in Glasgow’s Theatre Royal. The development of this project was supported by The British Council and The Scottish Government. (Part of Festival 2014)

David Dale Gallery, an artist-led voluntary organisation will work with several artist initiated projects across the six Commonwealth territories to produce an ambitious programme taking place during the Games. The programme will utilise the organisation's premises and other surrounding spaces within Glasgow's east end. International Artist Initiated will incorporate visual art exhibitions, public art, music, events, and publications. Each group will be invited to present a proposal, which responds to the context of the Commonwealth Games within Glasgow, and is representative or indicative of contemporary culture within their nation through the lens of an artist-led organisation. Since 2010, David Dale Gallery has developed an innovative programme of contemporary visual art and has a growing reputation within Scotland, nationally and internationally. The organisation also provides studio spaces for practicing contemporary visual artists and designers. (Part of Festival 2014)

A spectacular global performance on multiple stages. High above streets in three countries - Scotland, Australia, and Brazil - Perch delivers aerial theatre, street theatre, community participation, choirs, orchestras and media broadcast. An international collaboration from Conflux, Legs On The Wall, Lume Teatro, and composer Stephen Deazley, Perch will grow from small musical and theatrical interventions in each country to a spectacular finale in Glasgow. Audiences experience aerialists overhead while street performers mingle amongst them. An orchestra performs a live score and buildings are transformed before one's very eyes, while performances are screened live from Australia and Brazil. (Part of Festival 2014)

On Common Ground is a multi-faceted, multi-artform, community-based project culminating in outdoor Performances led by the Citizens Theatre in partnership with Debajehmujig Storytellers based in Wikwemikong Uncededed Indian Reservation, Canada and local Glasgow-based partner organisations. Incorporating a film made in Mannitoulin Island, Canada, an international workshop programme and a team of professional and non-professional performers, the project aims to tell a powerful story of people and their relationship to the environment related directly to the vision for an environmentally conscious Commonwealth Games. (Part of Culture 2014 and Festival 2014)

Q-POETICS installs the poet & poetry in queues during the Commonwealth Games. Through the arousal of curiosity, poet & performer Skye Loneragan joins those lining up to pay, purchase or pass. With so much going on in the Host city, queues are a sign of success and Q-POETICS infuses these places & spaces of waiting in innovative ways with visual and audio installations, performance poems and podcasts which can be downloaded while you're in your queue. (Part of Festival 2014)

Tron Theatre will present a celebratory Home Nations Programme with Scotland’s Makar at its centre during Games Time. Curated by Liz Lochhead, the programme will include dramatic interpretations of work from some of the UK and Northern Ireland’s finest poets including Dylan Thomas, Seamus Heaney, Carol-Anne Duffy and Edwin Morgan. (Part of Festival 2014).

News Just In by Random Accomplice will be a continually evolving, satirical comedy set in the media office of Glasgow 2014. Part live theatre, part online content, it's a direct response to the events that take place each day. (Part of Festival 2014)

Endurance from A Moment's Peace Theatre Company will examine the narratives of Empire through the inspiring stories of female Commonwealth athletes. Culminating in a site responsive theatre production examining strength, and illuminating what is achieved when women put their bodies on the line. The production will be created and performed by women from, and living in, Glasgow, under the direction of AMP’s Artistic Director Catrin Evans, but will tell the stories of female athletes from across the world, who since women joined the competition in 1934 have had a profound impact on the wider struggle for gender equality globally. (Part of Festival 2014)

Scotch Hoppers from stillmotion is a performance event inspired by childhood street games, such as hopscotch, that will link art and sport with physical play to create a new game.  Open to be played on and watched by people of all ages, Scotch Hoppers will take the form of a large scale sculptural installation that can also be used as a performance space.  A development of previous presentations, this new version will integrate performance and music to create a unique and friendly event. (Part of Festival 2014)

During one day in July, Glasgow Film will present a dynamic cinema experience exploring the theme of movement in significant, unexpected and underused locations, connecting communities and bringing the best of Scottish film to the fore. In Cargo Camera Action! Glasgow Film will work alongside Glasgow-based art collective 85A, to stage a spectacular cinematic takeover in and around the Clyde. Kinetic sets will be constructed with the unique Clyde setting as the backdrop for live performance. Audiences will be treated to a visually stunning display as performers narrate the history of movement in film in cinematic dioramas to the upbeat global sounds of bands and DJs.  (Part of Festival 2014)

The Scokendia Ensemble will bring together 24 young musicians from Scotland, Kenya and India to form a unique chamber orchestra. The musicians will be drawn from each country’s conservatoires, music schools, national youth orchestras and outreach projects, including the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, National Youth Orchestras of Scotland, Kenya Conservatoire of Music and India National Youth Orchestra. The performances, across Glasgow, will include four newly-commissioned pieces of music from young composers in each of the three countries. The musicians, playing on classical and traditional instruments, will bring together three culturally strong and distinct musical traditions in a celebration of the diversity of cultures of the Commonwealth.  A film, recording the ensemble’s work in their home countries and then during the Games, will be made, coupled with ongoing blogs and video diaries. This project is being led by Scottish musician Jamie Munn. (Part of Festival 2014).

Dancing City will celebrate the perpetual motion of the City by exploring and animating collective and individual journeys, creating the possibility for all of us to view seemingly ordinary things in new ways. Produced by Dance House, Dancing City will bring together professional artists and communities to take part in workshops, performances, film and projection in a highly accessible work. (Part of Festival 2014 and Culture 2014)

All Sided Games is a series of commissions by Collective Gallery, placing contemporary artists in venues built or used for the Edinburgh 1970 and 1986 Commonwealth Games and in venues to be used for Glasgow 2014. Delivered in partnership with Edinburgh Leisure and Glasgow Life, the project builds on Collective Gallery’s pioneering work connecting communities, international and Scotland-based artists, and draws people together to make work that brings into focus our relationship with each other, with art and with sport. In Edinburgh, artists Mitch Miller and Jacob Dahlgren will be working in and around Meadowbank Sports Centre, presenting work in October 2013, and Cristina Lucas will be developing a new project in December. In 2014 All Sided Games moves across Scotland to present projects in Glasgow. (Part of Culture 2014)

Sound to Sea will be an inspiring outdoor gala performance on the water and quayside of the River Clyde celebrating Glasgow’s history, industry, beauty and resources, and Scotland’s present day vibrant culture scene, diversity and wealth of talent. Cryptic, whose work aims to ravish the senses, are joining forces with Glasgow Science Centre, All or Nothing, Walk the Plank and a wide range of well-known and new musicians to create this spectacular happening. (Part of Festival 2014)

More projects will be announced in the coming months

Notes to Editors

  • The Commonwealth Games is an international, multi-sport event involving 71 teams of athletes from the Commonwealth of Nations. The event was first held in 1930 and takes place every four years. Glasgow 2014 will be the XX Commonwealth Games and will be held from 23 July to 3 August. It will feature 17 sports in 11 days of competition with 250 medal events on show.
  • The Games will play host to 4500 athletes and sell 1,000,000 tickets with the event aided by an army of 15,000 volunteers. Glasgow 2014 Ltd is the official name for the Organising Committee tasked with delivering the Games in partnership with the Scottish Government, Glasgow City Council and Commonwealth Games Scotland.
  • The Glasgow 2014 Cultural Programme, which is being developed both as a Scotland-wide Culture 2014 and Glasgow-focused Festival 2014, is a creative collaboration between the Organising Committee, Creative Scotland and Glasgow Life. As the organisation responsible for delivering the Games, Glasgow 2014 will oversee and provide the unifying brand for the Glasgow 2014 Cultural Programme which will be delivered by Glasgow Life in partnership with Creative Scotland.
  • Jim Lambie (b. 1964, Glasgow, Scotland) graduated from the Glasgow School of Art in 1994. Lambie lives and works in Glasgow as a visual artist, musician and DJ. He represented Scotland at the 50th Venice Biennale in 2003 and was nominated for the Turner Prize in 2005. His practice evolves from a response to the psychology of space and colour and is influenced by movements in art and the history of place. Lambie sources his material directly from the modern world. Referencing popular culture and drawing his subject matter from music and iconic figures, he makes use of everyday objects and materials - both found and fabricated. His sculptures and installations are able to reinvent the space into a dazzling interaction of colours, shapes and forms, challenging the viewer’s perceptions and creating an elaborate, otherworldly experience.
  • GENERATION has been developed as a partnership between the National Galleries of Scotland and Glasgow Life, supported by Creative Scotland.
  • New Music Biennial is a PRS for Music Foundation initiative, in partnership with Arts Council England, Creative Scotland and the British Council. It is presented in collaboration with BBC Radio 3, NMC Recordings, Southbank Centre and Glasgow UNESCO City of Music.
  • VELOCITY is a cultural response to the impact of the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games promoting an aspirational approach to partnership working to re-imagine, repair and reconnect neighbourhoods, communities and the city funded by Glasgow City Council, Creative Scotland and Clyde Gateway Urban Regeneration Company.
  • To keep up to date with all the information and sign up to receive a newsletter visit glasgow2014.com/culture.
  • Glasgow 2014 family of official sponsors is Longines, SSE, Emirates, Virgin Media, BP, Harper Macleod, Search Consultancy, Ernst & Young, Atos, Dell, Toshiba TEC, A.G. Barr, NVT Group, Cisco, RGS, Trespass, Riedel and Ticketmaster.
  • Glasgow 2014, the Commonwealth Games Federation and UNICEF are working together in an exciting partnership that will transform the lives of children in Scotland and throughout the Commonwealth. Using the power of sport and culture this unique partnership aims to inspire, enable and empower the children of the Commonwealth to be the best they can be.
  • For further information please contact Stephanie Todd at Glasgow 2014 on 030 2014 0611 or Stephanie.Todd@glasgow2014.com / Brian Maycock at Creative Scotland on 0131 523 0046 or Brian.Maycock@creativescotland.com / James Doherty at Glasgow Life on James.Doherty@glasgow.gov.uk or 0141 287 5970.